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Joanna

  • Date Submitted: 12/16/2011 01:10 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 59.1 
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Joanna is a typeface created by the typographer Eric Gill which was name after his youngest daughter. He described the font to be “ a book face free from all fancy business.” Gill was inspired by Robert Granjon’s typefaces. Joanna has strong similarities with Granjon’s type faces in both Roman and Italics, but the sharp square serifs and moderate contrast of strokes gives the font a modern feel. Eric Gill was also the creator of other well known fonts like Gill sans, prepetua, cockerel and floriated capitals.

Joanna was created between 1930 and 1931 specifically for gill’s printing shop Hague and Gill. it was produced by the Carlson Foundry for hand composition, they only created a small amount and only in two sizes. The first time the font was ever used was in Gill’s book “Essay’s on Typography” a book on his thoughts on typography, typesetting, and page design. After M. Dent and son’s bought Hague and Gill the rights to Joanna became theirs. After a while, Dent released roman and Italics to the small family which Monotype added to their library then 1937, Monotype released a machine set version of the type. In 1988 Monotype added a semi-bold, bold and extra bold the now large family of the typeface.

The typeface Joanna is a transitional Serif and the kind of serif included is the slab serif. The stroke of the font is modulated, moderate and contrasted and the terminals are pen formed. the design is based on traditional Roman letter proportions, Gill purposely deviated from the pronounced thick and thin contrast of that model. The italics in Joanna is more the Roman slant or slope then cursive, and it is dubbed to be Gills most successful italic.

Most recently a man has took in inspiration in Gills work and created a typeface called FF Scalla which was by a Dutch type designer named Martin Majoor. Now the Joanna family is available as a suite of OpenType Pro fonts. Graphic communicators can now work with this versatile design while taking advantage of...

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